Research Handbooks in Corporate Law and Governance series
Edited by Jennifer G. Hill and Randall S. Thomas
Chapter 5: US hedge fund activism
Hedge fund activism is a recent, but now prominent, topic in academic research. Since 2006, scholarship on hedge fund activism has grown from virtually non-existent to mainstream. A search for “hedge fund activism” in the Social Science Research Network database on March 17, 2015 generated 106 papers, none posted before 2006. The same search on Google Scholar generated approximately 20,000 results, but just 38 through 2006. “Hedge fund activism” did not appear in a published law review article until 2007; today, the term is common. Research suggests that the new US hedge fund activism “era” began less than two decades ago. Scholars studying US hedge fund activism have focused primarily on the period from the late 1990s through 2007. Partnoy and Thomas assemble a sample of hedge fund activism from 1999 to 2005 (Partnoy and Thomas 2005). Kahan and Rock cite a string of widely-publicized hedge fund activism stories from 2005 and 2006 (Kahan and Rock 2007). Bratton collected, and later extended, a sample of activist targets from 2002 through 2006 (Bratton 2007; Bratton 2010). Klein and Zur use a sample of activist events from 2003 to 2005 (Klein and Zur 2009). Brav, Jiang, Partnoy and Thomas collect a larger sample from 2001 to 2006, and Bebchuk, Brav, and Jiang expand this sample to cover from 1994 to 2007 (Brav et al. 2008; Bebchuk et al. 2013).
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